I go through phases where I suddenly "remember" a dish, and then binge on it for a period of weeks or months. It seems as though that dish is often the quesadilla - the Mexican fried cheese sandwich.
As I said recently, I've "been craving spicy flavours. I've been wanting the prickle of chilli, cut back with cool lime and green herbs, underscored with salty fishsauce. I've been wanting rice." but in the last couple of weeks I have been slaking this thirst with Mexican, rather than South East Asian flavours.
I think Mexican food is right up there with Thai and Vietnamese for balancing hot, sweet, salt, sharp and fresh flavours, creating these very satisfying dishes. Or it should be, when it is done well.
My most recent quesadilla kick was instigated by Arlene, at the Food of Love with her black bean and goats cheese ones. I didn't mince my jalapenos, I used big slices of pickled ones, but the flavours were gorgeous.
Then Thomasina Miers' new series Mexican Food Made Simple hit channel 5 and my journey to the cheesy side was complete.
You can put pretty much anything in a quesadilla, as long as it isn't too runny and only needs warming through. An egg, beaten with grated cheese and mixed with sliced pickled jalapenos is ridiculously delicious. Mashed potato flecked with chorizo and thyme is one of the fillings they serve at Thomasina's restaurant Wahaca - my version used baby new potatoes and home made Mexican chorizo. Plain cheese is also good. Cheese and a sprinkle of hot sauce. Cheese and tomato. Cheese and mushroom. Cheese and leftover roast chicken.
It just occured to me that quattro formaggi would make a cross-cultural quesadilla of extraordinary beauty. I must try it.